Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) is no stranger to obstacles. In his life, opportunities have always followed, and he believes the same will be true of the current coronavirus crisis.
“From the foundation of this nation, to this pandemic,” Scott told Faithwire, “the one place we’ve always turned when the chips were down, when everything was going to be counted, we turned to the Lord, the author and the finisher of our faith.”
The 54-year-old lawmaker believes the timing of the release of his latest book, “Opportunity Knocks,” is more than a coincidence, as it chronicles his personal faith journey through numerous adversities not unlike the calamity we’re facing today.
In his discussion with us, Scott referenced Romans 8:28 — “God works for the good of those who love Him” — which he said has been a “consistent” truth throughout his life.
He went on to say his faith in Jesus has been “strengthened” even amid this health crisis, urging Americans, particularly as Easter approaches, to be encouraged, “because I know the best for this nation is on the other side of the current pandemic.” Scott’s courage to keep trusting in God’s plan is due in no small part to the faith of his mother, whom he described as his “hero” and “best friend.”
“With this pandemic going on, I get to have lunch with her nearly every single day and I’m reminded of how strong and powerful a mother’s love is,” the senator said, adding he’s remembering to lean on “the good Lord’s love” as well.
To those struggling with fear and anxiety over the forced economic recession and the serious health risks of COVID-19, Scott pointed to 2 Timothy 1:7, which reads, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.”
He then offered a profound reminder as we approach Easter Sunday.
“This is a time where the church might be empty, but the tomb is empty, too,” Scott said. “This is a time when our ministry no longer resides in a specific location but, like the Great Commission, our ministry goes throughout the community, and frankly, throughout the world.”
Scott was one of the lawmakers who championed the inclusion of churches and faith-based organizations in the $2 trillion CARES Act, ensuring they have access to loans and grants, should they need it during the pandemic.
And in recent days, more data has come out showing those in the African-American community may be more susceptible to dangerous outcomes if they become infected with COVID-19. That has been particularly true in southern states like South Carolina, where Scott serves as senator.
The Republican politician, the first African-American to serve as a senator from his state, told us he has been “encouraged” by his conversations with President Donald Trump and members of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. He has spoken about the issue with Dr. Deborah Birx, who serves as the task force’s response coordinator, as well as Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
“The one thing that’s crystal clear is the administration’s response has been really positive,” he explained. Scott said he will be speaking this week with African-American leaders and the White House about disseminating more information to the black community “to help us understand the heightened risk we face.”
Perhaps most importantly, Scott urged federal, state, and local leaders to make “an abundance of tests available,” arguing it’s the key to reopening the economy as soon as possible. During his calls with Fauci, Birx, and Vice President Mike Pence, Scott said “the primary question” from himself and his Republican colleagues has been about pushing out a greater number of COVID-19 tests.
Scott is setting aside politics to help in other ways, too. One South Carolina business owner, Tony Bakker, is pledging to match donations up to $500,000 for the COVID-19 Relief & Recovery Fund of the Coastal Community Foundation through April 20. If the goal is reached, the fund’s total will be at least $1.5 million, all of which will go to nonprofits and churches providing medical care, food access, and financial support to those in need. Inspired by Bakker, Scott told us he has personally donated $4,000 to churches in his community — a challenge he’s passing on to his fellow members of Congress.
“One thing I’ve learned in life is there’s always a silver lining,” Scott said. “Opportunity always knocks.”
The senator’s new book is available now everywhere books are sold.